What are Binary Financial Protocols?

There are different binary financial protocols used to transport business-level messages depending on the business messaging context.

Typical transport level examples being market data feed(network multicast/UDP), order entry and post trade (network unicast/TCP).

Typical business level messaging contexts will support:

  • data feed events
  • security definitions and statuses
  • market events
  • order lifecycle events (added, executed, canceled, deleted, replaced)
  • trades (provide execution details for match events involving non-displayable order types)

It is generally useful to think of such protocols as two unique layers:

  • low session level network transport-level protocols that manage message sequencing, retransmission, and delivery guarantees.
  • application level business level message that are delivered using the lower level transport protocol 

Some protocols define both session level and application level (e.g. FIX) and others define application level with transport session level options (e.g. ITCH with SoupBinTCP or MoldUDP64)

Usage examples of Binary Financial Protocols


Financial Information eXchange (FIX) protocol is an open set of standards for electronic communications protocol designed to standardise and streamline electronic communications in the financial services industry.

FIX Performance Session Layer (FIXP) is a lightweight protocol that describes how to establish and maintain a communication session between two endpoints.

ITCH protocol based market data feed is a series of sequenced binary messages.

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